Welcome back to our series. I am so glad you are here!
Friends, when I began learning about p*rnography, I was overwhelmed with some statistics:
I also wondered if those numbers were true. So I asked many priests if they saw that trend in the confessional. They said yes. They said it was heartbreaking. Younger and younger kids were bringing the problem of p*rnographic exposure to the confessional. (Priests sharing a general trend does not break the seal of confidentiality.)
Now, I appreciated being able to see the problem, but it also became super difficult; it was like there was this big cosmic war going on all around us, between good and evil, and kids were getting sucked in and no.one.was.aware.of.it. (Except priests, who were bound to silence by the seal of confession.)
I knew parents were not aware of it because when we gave presentations I would ask the audience, consisting of AMAZING parents, at what age they thought kids were first exposed to p*rn. They said age 13. Or 15. No one said age 8.
I felt overwhelmed and paralyzed. And that, my friend, is what fear does. It captures. And keeps us chained.
I share that with you because as you open yourself to the idea and understanding that p*rnography is a supernatural stimuli and that it really wants to lure your child, you might wanna swan dive off the deep edge of fear.
As Christians, we don’t need to live in fear. Because we have something way more powerful and effective: Love.
We have been given a conquering SPIRITUAL REALITY. We are not merely human beings, slogging through life. We have divine life within us. We are beloved daughters of the King of the ENTIRE Universe.
May that knowledge shift us out of fear mode.
Yes, there is evil in this world but we.are.not.orphans. God, in His Great Goodness, has given us AUTHORITY over that evil.
When that understanding really took hold of me, it was like the heavens opened up and I could see the role of mothers in this realm. We have incredible power.
I hope I have helped you see the real world; the p*rnographic industry wants to invade our children’s hearts, minds and lives.
We need to open our eyes and understand the battlefield. There are complexities here. I mean, p*rnography was designed (by really crafty people) to create a response.
Think about that. We are sexual people. That’s who we are, praise God. When we see a sexual image we will have a natural, neurological response to it. We need to help our children understand and process their feelings when they see sexual images.
Knowing that, we need to guide them -without shaming them- to close their eyes and turn away when they see a stimulating photo or video. Then we need to teach them to talk with us. (Which means we have to constantly work on making our emotional selves a safe place for them to land.)
It’s pretty cool, if you think about it. And it’s about taking EVERY OPPORTUNITY to bring the LIGHT into their lives and break up the darkness that wants to overtake our kids.
I love that so much and I hope you can see just how much power and influence you have in this realm.
Now, I know that can seem kind of “pie in the sky” so let’s look at a real situation:
One day my friend’s daughter did something wrong then the daughter lied about it.
My friend, who has bought into this idea of “Parenting Below the Line” and parenting from a place of love knew she needed to focus on her daughter’s heart.
So she asked if she could chat. The daughter said yes.
My friend drew out a circle and put God at the top and herself at the bottom of the circle.
She started with God and pointed downwards to herself and said, “God wills my good.”
Then she went from herself on the circle and pointed back up to God and stated, “And I can trust Him.”
“This circle flows in my life. I know that God wants my best. And I know that I can trust Him.”
Then my friend looked at her daughter and said, “That same circle is in your life. God wants the best for you...and you can trust Him.”
The daughter nodded.
“Not only that,” my friend added, “But I want the best for you, too...and I can be trusted. Do you see how this circle is about you and me, too?”
Again, the daughter nodded.
Then my friend drew a dotted line and said, "The issue is that there is this invisible line...we show people our good works and such...on top of the line...but then when we fall into temptations of any sort, we do this thing. We hide ourselves below that line."
The daughter understood what was being said.
The mom (a true mama bear) looked her daughter in the eye and said, "Here's what you need to know. You don't have to hide your behavior. In fact, I would love to just get rid of that line because there is NOT ANYTHING YOU COULD EVER DO THAT WILL MAKE ME LOVE YOU LESS."
She focused on her heart and told her, "You are loved, child. Supremely loved."
Then, with that as the opening, they talked about the situation where the daughter had lied and such. They spoke openly and freely. My friend said that she didn't judge or freak.
The daughter shared. She could see where she went off the track. At the end of the convo, she looked relieved and grateful.
Parenting Below the Line means TELLING your child about the line. Draw it out. Talk about what it feels when we hide from others and how it actually makes us feel miserable.
Another mother friend of mine found out that her son had sent a picture of his penis to a female friend. She told me that she wanted to rant. She wanted to rave. But instead, she decided to try being open with her son.
This mother sat her son down and told him how much she loved him...and then shared that she knew he had sent a picture of his penis to a girl.
My friend did not judge. She did not shame. She made it clear that she was on her son’s team.
He could see that his mom was not going to get angry with him so he was honest with her. They talked openly and freely.
My friend told me it was just about the best conversation she had ever had with her son. They connected on a deep level.
THE BEST THING EVA was what those two women gave to their children. Open, honest conversation without anger or judgment.
That is love.
Love is greater than fear.
Other “love” things to say over your child:
In the beginning of this post I shared how, when I first learned about p*rn in our world, I became paralyzed with fear.
Then God came in and rearranged my furniture and I learned some things. I came to see God the Father and His POWER in a whole new light.
“If God is for us, who can be against us?” - Romans 8:31.
Let that permeate deep into your bones.
Changing our internal dialogue from FEAR to LOVE changes just about everything. It changes how we see our role. It changes how we think about our relationships. It changes how we speak to our children.
It changes all.
So when you are caught in the emotion of fear, stop. Know who you are. Know the divine life that flows in your veins.
Real love casts out fear. Parent from that place.
In our next session (which will be posted on Tuesday, April 6, 2021, ONE WEEK FROM TODAY) we are going to be wrapping everything up as we look at creating a strong emotional environment for your family. Now. If the idea of “creating” new structures within the home puts you in overwhelm, we understand. We got you covered. We’ll talk more about that in our 7th and final session. See you then.
P.S. Many mothers just give. And give. And give. And when we do that, we can also have deep resentments (without even understanding why). And then we get crabby (which affects everyone). One thing that has helped me IMMENSELY is giving myself permission to take care of Lori.
If you want to dig deeper into the idea and understanding of self-care (without guilt!) then you'll like this post: Your Child Deserves the Best Version of You.
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